In this performance, the artist Yingmei Duan and her partner Nikos Fragkou walk hand in hand in slow motion through the whole of the Foundation Beyeler in Riehen (Basel, Switzerland). Smiling, they move slowly in silence. From time to time they choose a member of the audience and approach him or her, keeping eye contact, and as they are Passing By (the title of the performance) they touch him/her very slowly and softly. They will also interact indirectly by passing by other visitors and artworks, in a similar way appreciating every moment.
Yingmei Duan and her partner performed this piece for the one-day exhibition The Artist is an Explorer, curated by Marina Abramovic at Fondation Beyeler.
Yingmei Duan: Passing By. Performance at Fondation Beyeler, Riehen (Basel, Switzerland), September 20, 2014.
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“Life is always changing, it is important to face life with a smile.”
“Each day we see so many different people and things. But most of the time they drift past us and do not sink into our consciousness. In this performance my motivation is to keep these moments alive and linger on the various people I see.”
Yingmei Duan (1969, China) was part of the Chinese avant-garde in the legendary art district of Beijing’s East Village. In 1995 she participated in the performance to add one meter to an anonymous mountain. She became a pure performance artist under the influence of Marina Abramović.
For the past 14 years she has concentrated her energy and creativity on making performance art and researching the media. Various different themes inspire Yingmei and are reflected in her work. Within her performances she crosses media and often incorporates sound, video and installation. Besides her solo projects she loves to work with people from different cultures, ages and areas of life and has realized over 60 collaborative performances. Yingmei Duan has made her name in numerous national and international exhibitions including the recent 19th Biennale of Sydney in Australia (2014).